It's final. This year's Manila International Auto Show (MIAS) has been canceled.
Originally, the show was supposed to be held from April 2 to April 5, 2020. But due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the organizers decided to postpone the event in the meantime. This was to prevent the spread of the virus and to ensure the safety of the stakeholders, exhibitors, and visitors.
However, the government is still not allowing big events that can attract big crowds, even under Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ). But with nearly 23,000 individuals (17,239 active cases) positive for the virus at the moment, the organizers are not taking any chances and decided to cancel the show altogether. More infections could arise should the event push through due to the crowd MIAS attracts.
Another reason why this year's MIAS will not push through is the lack of a venue. The World Trade Center Manila in Pasay City is currently being used as a quarantine site for COVID-19. The empty trade show hall has been transformed into a field hospital that has been designed to treat infected patients, as well as decongest the current healthcare system.
With the annual auto show likely to resume next year, automakers that were supposed to hold vehicle launches at MIAS might have to resort to digital online launches for the time being. Brands such as Ford, Geely, and Jeep recently held the virtual launch of the Everest Sport, Compass/Renegade, and the Azkarra, respectively amid the new normal.